Amtrak acquiring 75 locomotives in bid to modernize aging fleet

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Amtrak will acquire new passenger diesel locomotives from Siemens Mobility to replace its aging National Network fleet.

These initial 75 locomotives will be used principally for Amtrak’s long-distance train service, with options to purchase more.

Amtrak has maintenance and operations centers in northern Delaware, with Wilmington among its busiest stations. Siemens has a service center in New Castle.

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“These new locomotives will offer increased reliability, more hauling power, improved safety features, and lower emissions,” said Amtrak CEO Richard Anderson.

“Siemens Mobility is honored and grateful to Amtrak for this opportunity to assist Amtrak in their mission to provide safe, world-class, environmentally conscious technology for their long-distance services,” said Michael Cahill, president of Siemens Mobility’s North America rolling stock business.

The new locomotives will offer the latest safety systems including Crash Energy Management and Positive Train Control. Capable of speeds up to 125 MPH, the locomotives will have 4,400 horsepower capable 16-cylinder Cummins QSK95 diesel engines with modern control systems and Alternating Current (AC) propulsion. The diesel engine will come equipped with the newest emissions technology and provide an average of 10 percent savings in diesel fuel consumption.

Delivery of the new locomotives will begin in summer 2021, with passenger service beginning in fall 2021.

Candidates for the new locomotives are long-distance routes that pass through Wilmington including the Palmetto and Silver Meteor.

All locomotives are expected to be in service by 2024. Maintenance activities across the network will be supported by a supplemental multiyear Technical Support Spares Supply Agreement (TSSSA).

Amtrak is paying for the new locomotives through available funds. They will be built at Siemens Mobility’s rail manufacturing plant in Sacramento, CA.

Siemens Mobility has established a robust and diverse base of U.S. suppliers across the country to support the production of its current Charger diesel locomotives, including Cummins, which manufactures its engines in its Seymour, Indiana, facility.

Siemens Mobility’s Charger locomotives are currently operating in several state-supported Amtrak routes in California, Illinois, Wisconsin, Missouri, Michigan, and Washington.

The new locomotives will primarily replace Amtrak P40 and P42 locomotives, some of which have been in service for more than 25 years.

The new locomotives are part of Amtrak’s long-term planned series of improvements for fleet, infrastructure and stations. New Acela trainsets are arriving in 2021.

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